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Full text of "The cubies' ABC"

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Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2010 with funding from 

Research Library, The Getty Research Institute 



http://www.archive.org/details/cubiesabcnewyorkOOIyal 



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/^\ IS for Art In the Cubies' domain — 

(Not the Art of the Ancients, brand-new are 
the Cubies.) 
Archipenko 's their guide, Anatomies their bane; 
They 're the joy of the mad, the despair of the sane, 
(With their emerald hair and their eyes red as 
rubies.) 
— A is for Art in the Cubies' domain. 



^^ IS for Beauty as Brancusi views it. 

— ^ (The Cubies all vow he and Braque take the 

Bun.) 
First you seize all that's plain to the eye, then you 

lose it; 
Next you search for the Soul and proceed to abuse it. 

(They tell me it 's easy and no end of fun.) 
— B is for Beauty as Brancusi views it. 



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IS for Color Cubistic ad libitum — 
(Orange and blue, yellow, purple and green.) 
''Throw them all on your boards," Cubies say, ''then 

exhibit 'em!" 
There '11 be no colors left. If we don't soon prohibit 'em! 
(Watch them at work and you '11 see what I 
mean.) 
— C is for Color Cubistic ad libitum. 



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IS for Duchamp, the Deep- Dyed Deceiver, 
Who, drawing accordeons, labels them stairs, 
With a lady that must have been done in a fever, — 
His model won't see her, we trust, it would grieve 
her! — 
(Should the stairway collapse. Cubic 's good at 
repairs.) 
— D is for Duchamp, the Deep-Dyed Deceiver. 



12 



^ 'S for the Ego, intense and Exotic, 

Enjoyed by a Cubie, and quaintly Expressed 



In a lachrymose face with a gaze idiotic 
When seen on the canvas. — It's really Quixotic 

To offer one's soul to the Cubical test! 
— E's for the Ego, intense and Exotic, 



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'S for the Future for which Cubies hanker; — 
To Hals, Perugino and all that old crew 
They give up the Past without envy or rancor, 
While saying in tones than which naught could be 
franker: 
*'Come, move on, — it's our turn! They have fin- 
ished with you." 
— F's for the Future for which Cubies hanker. 



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/r^ IS for Gertrude Stein's limpid lucidity, 

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^ ^^1 (Eloquent scribe of the Futurist soul.) 
Cubies devour each word with avidity: 
''Alone words lack sense," they affirm with placidity, 
''But liozv wise we'll be when we've swallowed 
the whole!" 
— G is for Gertrude Stein's limpid lucidity. 



IS for Henri's young Red Top, the shaver 
MJ 1^ Whom Cubies regard with aversion and spite. 
His hfe-hke appearance has won their disfavor: 
*'He might walk right out of the picture!" they qua- 
ver, — 
''Why, only to think of it fills us with fright!" 
— H is for Henri's young Red Top the shaver. 



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W 'S for the Cubies' Immense Intuition, — 
M '*The only real need of an artist," they say: 
*' Without it we all would go straight to perdition!" 
Between you and me, I 've a sneaking suspicion 

The Cubies themselves appear well on the way 
— I's for the Cubies' Immense Intuition. 



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S for the Jam In the Cubles' headquarters, 
And the Jar that they gave us, the first time 
we met; 
And that same Jar of Jam from across the blue waters 
Is quite unexcelled among those the importers 

Have wafted us over the ocean as yet. 
— J's for the Jam in the Cubies' headquarters. 



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77/^ 'S for Kandinsky's Kute ''improvisations" — 
^\^ The Kubies abound in delight for his art: 
They say there's a Klue to his Kryptic Kreations. 
By means of Picabia's deep ratiocinations 

Some day we may really decipher his heart. 
— K's for Kandinsky's Kute "improvisations." 



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Jf^ IS for Life that is ''still," as they name it, 

Or ''nature" that's "dead," as you readily see. 



When you think how it's treated, you really can't 

blame it. 
You'd wish, in it's place, yo7i were dead. Just the 
same it 
Is shocking how cruel the Cubies can be! 
— L is for Life that is "still," as they name it. 



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^^^, 'S for Matisse's Mam'selle Maroruerlte, 
^A\ yA (^With whom all the Cubies are madly in love;) 
Her manner is so prepossessing and sweet 
That, if she but had them, we'd fall at her feet! 

(In her eyes, what a mmgling of serpent and 
dove!) 
— M 's for Matisse's Mam'selle Mars^uerite. 



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'S for the Nudes that the Cubies portray, — 
We wilHngly vouch for their perfect propriety, 

Even while some we regard with dismay, — 
For instance, the lady as long as Broadway: 

With all due respect, we don't crave her society! 
■ — N 's for the Nudes that the Cubies portray. 



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'S for Objective and Optical Art, 

(The kind we've been used to, these long years 

gone by,) 
Which the Cubic Objects to with all of his heart: 
"Make the Object Subjective," he says, "at the 
start, — 
Just a matter of Grammar, as easy as pie!" 
— O 's for Objective and Optical Art. 



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p^ 'S for Picasso, Picabia and Party 

-^ (Who deal in abstractions, distractions and such.) 
When, with vision chaotic and expletives hearty, 
You beg of a Cubic their sense to impart, he 

Profoundly makes answer: "In little is much." 
— P's for Picasso, Picabia and Party. 



36 




'S for the Oueerness we Stand-patters feel 
When Progressive young Cubles start Art re- 
formation. 
They're strong on Initiative, praise the Square Deal: 
"Though the Cubic Is best!" they aggressively squeal; 
"Painting things as you see them Is rank defor- 
mation!" 
— Q's for the Oueerness we Stand-patters feel. 



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r^) IS for Reason and poor old Reality, 
^\^ Once in the fashion, but now obsolete. 

Banished forever with grim actuality. 

Now the sole law is one's own personality — 

Find its Cube Root and you have it complete. 

— R is for Reason and poor old Reality. 



40 



't^^^ IS for Schamberg's fair dame at her 'phone, 
^ Conversino^ with G. Stein, the Futurist scribe, 




The Cubies, eavesdropping, hear Gertrude bemoan: 
"This one feehng many far seeming alone, 

The bluer the bliss the redder the bribe!" 
— S is for Schamberg's fair dame at her 'phone. 



42 



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'S for tlie Type of Tree Chabaud's erected. 
The Cubies insist it's as useful as fair 



For a game that they play when they're feeling dejected, 
(A use which not every one would have detected,) 

Lassoing the branches with rings of their hair. 
— T s for the Type of Tree Chabaud's erected. 



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y'S for the Union so Utterly Useless 
Uniting the members that make up the whole. 
Arainst it the Cubies was^e war that is truceless: 
''Such rage for convention," they cry, "is excuseless! 

Away with cohesion, and set free the Soul!" 
— U 's for the Union so Utterly Useless. 



46 



IS for Villon's musicianlv lady 

(With charm evanescent and Visage remote.) 
The picnics he gives in his orchards so shady 
Account for his hit with the Cubes. I 'm afraid he 

Will spoil them completely for plain table d'hote. 
— V is for Villon's musicianly lady. 



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. . . ., 'S for Woolworth, the buildinor so stable, 

Erected with nickels and dimes by us all,) 



\\ hich Cubies paint writhing from cellar to gable, 
Distinctly resembling the Tower of Babel, 

Some decades ago, just preceding its fall. 
— 'W 's for Woolworth, the building so stable. 



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IS the Xit, Xtremely alluring 

When Cubies invite us to study their Art; 
And the Xquisite pain we are sadly enduring 
The while they protest, with an air reassuring: 

" Of course this is merely a diffident start !'' 
— X is the Xit, Xtremely alluring. 



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¥'S for the Yawn overcomino^ each Cubie 
At sight of a painting not done in his style: 
"If a man doesn't use all the colors, from ruby 
To sapphire and emerald and topaz — the booby! — 

To look at Ms canvas is not worth one's while!' 
— Y's for the Yawn overcoming each Cubie. 



54 




IS for Zak's summer-time composition; 
v^^\ The Cubies regard his plump hills with delight. 
They are somewhat fatigued after this exhibition 
And tempted to slumber; so, with your permission, 

We'll tuck them in snugly and bid them good- 
night. 
— Z is for Zak's summer-time composition. 



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